I'm currently renovating my 350-year old cottage, so I've spent a fair bit of time in KX67 XPS recently for trips to Wickes, Notcutts and doing proper van stuff. The 3,200 litre capacity has been well used; packed with everything from a rotavator to a full interior for my Clio, along with bikes and furniture. The only thing it hasn't been able to move was a set of scaffolding - perhaps my expectations were a bit much although the bulkhead panels are removable so there was a chance it was going to make it, but no such luck.
Other than not having quite enough leg room (I'm yet to find a van that does) it has been an absolute dream. Volkswagen are very good at making their commercial vehicles drive just like your family wagon. In another life I used to drive a lot of pick ups and the Amarok (pictured further down) was fantastic, a real cut above the rest. Not just for the way it handled, but down to the premium interior and even the gear change, with the latter being like stirring a cauldron of potion in a Nissan Navara. It's every bit the same for the Caddy and if it weren't for the fuel sloshing around in the back when it's empty, you could easily forget you're in a van.
Fully laden the 150hp 2.0TDI still has good poke and will happily return 50mpg on a long run. I foolishly tried to be sensible and recently bought a hateful Skoda Fabia 1.6TDI with 105hp. It goes without saying the van is better to drive in every respect, from cornering to the infotainment and pulling up faster on the brakes. Damn, it's even better on fuel too. We've already mentioned the heated seats enough, but they were glorious after a long hack on my mountain bike at Afan. Other than the harder wearing plastics and higher seating position, you could be forgiven if you were put into the cockpit blindfolded and thought you were in a Golf with the comfy seats, Apple CarPlay, decent speakers and a steering wheel (probably from a Golf) covered in buttons. Not your average van affair.
On the topic of being blindfolded, some numpty managed to smash the mirror glass while the Caddy was parked outside my house. Naturally when there's a village fete going on, all sensible parking consideration goes out the window, so it was inevitable with some other muppet parking opposite the van leaving a narrow space to get through. Luckily for me, my girlfriend's candle obsession finally paid off and I was able to improvise with a chrome-finished candle lid as a mirror for the journey to Bicester for our Sunday Service at the Classic and Sportscar Show the next day. Thanks Pecksniff's. We've previously commented we would have preferred a more original rear wing door configuration, but the one-piece tailgate was very handy for us to sit at the back and enjoy the air display with some shade.
So I suppose my only real frustration is not being able to take it to my local tip, as a panel van is deemed to be taking commercial waste. You can get a local resident permit, but it has to be the only vehicle in your household. You could probably get away with it in a Kombi, plus the removable rear seats may come in handy too. All in all some top vanning from me over the last couple of months and we've still got a handful of Sunday Services left to go before the year is out, so we'll see a few of you soon!
Car: Volkswagen Caddy Highline 2.0 TDI 150ps
On fleet since: January 2018
Mileage: 2,633 (delivered on 120)
List price new: £21,330 (As tested £26,629 comprised of £504 for deep black pearlescent paint with Titanium black upholstery, £600 for Winter pack including headlight washers, heated washer jets, washer fluid level indicator, heated driver's and front passenger seats and electric auxiliary air heater, £252 for rear parking sensors with rear view camera, £78 for lumbar support for driver and front passenger seats, £144 for high beam assist, £114 for electrically foldable and adjustable heated mirrors and £150 for App-connect).
Last month at a glance: Our new Sunday Service steed slots into service superbly!
PH in a van!
Sunday Service duties